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Woggles in the sun

After last weekend's sunshine, the forecast for this one has been looking a bit grim, but then Saturday isn't as bad as expected and Sunday seems to be turning out quite nice!

So, then, a-woggling we will go!

And the woggles are in the pink.

Once again Dave's got Lily Partridge to come and start the race, and to say a few words beforehand. Once again there's a rumour that she might be taking part in the race, but once again it proves unfounded. One of these days she's gonna have to stop chickening out. Afraid of the competition, eh?

Everybody begins to make their way to the race start. Unlike last year, somebody manages to get there with a 'Start' sign first, so I don't need to unleash my inner sheepdog and corral them all at roughly the right sort of place-ish. I didn't let the power go to my head, though, so I don't feel deprived.

Lily rings the bell and Pavlov's dogs all start running. The young lad at the edge of the picture is definitely cheating though.

Amanda is number 1668, although 1666 might be more appropriate as the WW takes place close to the anniversary of our very own Great Fire. She'll just have to stay next door.

Is she trying to hide from me or to give this chap a bit of a thrill? I think he's not too sure either.

Here are the leaders at about the 3.5k mark. They will have split into two pairs about two minutes apart by the end, but right now there's next to nothing in it.

The route at this point is a little different to previous years, and it's fortunate I've been given the gen in advance by Dave, because the website still links to an older GPS track at

He made particular mention of this rather splendidly photogenic tree.

In previous Woggles, I've gone from my first stop in the woods to the road crossing before they run across the top of the ploughed field, but it's time for a bit of a change. As ever, though, the plan is tentative, so we will have to see how it goes. OpenStreetMap is good with trails and tracks (far better than Google maps), but you still can't get much of an idea how long A to B will take on a bicycle without seeing the terrain for yourself.

So what looks like a short distance on the map is actually up a very steep hill, and by the time I've got to the top, it's pretty clear that these are slower people than Amanda and I've missed her. Still, it's a part of the Woggle course I've not seen or photographed before, and it certainly has some beautiful views.

Well towards the back of the pack here, but who cares.

Back in the woods it seems obvious that one would find a Grufalo on marshalling duty.

And a fine crop of bluebells.

I think now that it's probably impossible for me to get ahead of Amanda for the 7.5k point I'd got in mind, and having failed to make a note of the exact start time (it was a bit late), I can't come up with a good estimate of her arrival time there anyway. Plan B, then, back to the finish.

Past the mansion house, looking splendid in Spring as always with its wisteria.

Dave is cheering people on at the final exit from the woods when I get there, and assures me I haven't missed Amanda. I was fairly sure I was in good time, but it's nice to have it confirmed.

"Look at me! I'm a Farnham Runner!"

I don't like to tell him I've seen his sort before.

And here she comes, about to turn the final corner into the home straight.

But if I want a good finish-line picture, I'm going to have to run myself now!

Phew! I can out-sprint her over the final hundred metres! I wouldn't give too much for my chances over any significantly greater distance, though.

Let's try out the Woodland Woggle Official Selfie Frame!

Ah, it's 1666's neighbour on the other side. (I bet he doesn't drink Carling Black Label.)

And still plenty coming through as it's time for us to leave.

Just a few miles down the road is The Sculpture Park (, so we're off to be all culchural like.

As I'm paying for entrance, the lady asks me how I heard about them. "My wife sent me an email", I reply, which is technically accurate but probably not quite what she was looking for. I turn to Amanda for further enlightenment and it seems that they were recommended to us by Hannah Peschar on a previous visit to her sculpture garden (quite possibly after the Surrey Slog!)

They're quite similar in a lot of ways, and if you like one, you'll almost certainly like the other.

After much thought, I have failed to come up with an amusing yet insightful bon mot about this piece; I guess that's Art for you.

Through the foliage, we spy a tank, and round the other side, the artist is still painting it.

You can tell he's an artist...

And it's goodbye from me.

Love to all,


PS: You know that bit in the Bible where it says "the first shall be last" and all that? Well that's why last week's Esher 10k hasn't been written up yet. See, it's God's Will. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

year index